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Omega-3 Supplements Not Effective In Reversing Age-Related Cognitive Declines – Study

March 10, 2011: 10:38 AM EST
A U.S. study in rats has found that there are fewer benefits to taking omega-3 supplements as one ages. The researchers fed omega-3s to young and old rats for four months, finding no impact on age-related decline in cognitive function among the older rats, but a “small but positive” improvement in heart function, especially diastolic function. The younger rats, however, showed improvements in spatial memory. In the older rats, the fish oil supplements were not associated with any reversal of the age-related memory deficits or increases in inflammation in the brain, the researchers wrote. They said more studies are needed to determine whether omega-3 “supplementation may need to occur prior to the accumulation of inflammatory damage to be effective in the brain and in the heart.”
S. Sergeant, et al. , "Dietary Fish Oil Modestly Attenuates the Effect of Age on Diastolic Function but Has No Effect on Memory or Brain Inflammation in Aged Rats", Journal of Gerontology: Biological Science , March 10, 2011, © The Authors
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